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04/06/09 3:30 PM ET

Rainout bumps Royals' rotation slightly

Starters Ramirez, Meche switched against Yankees

CHICAGO -- There was just one slight change in the Royals' rotation as a result of losing Tuesday's open date, now filled by the postponed season opener.

Left-hander Horacio Ramirez will start on Saturday night against the New York Yankees at Kauffman Stadium instead of Sunday as originally planned.

Gil Meche, booked for Opening Day against the White Sox, will pitch on Sunday against the Yankees instead of Saturday night. That's to give him his usual four days of rest.

So it's Meche, Zack Greinke, Kyle Davies, Sidney Ponson, Ramirez and Meche, in that order, for the first six games.

"Honestly, we've only done the rotation one time through, just in case we run into any more difficulties here in Chicago," manager Trey Hillman said.

Ponson, scheduled to start Friday's home opener against the Yankees, warmed up on Sunday in a much warmer Surprise, Ariz., before flying into frigid Chicago. He worked against an assortment of Royals Minor Leaguers in an extended spring game. No pitching line was available, just a report from the man himself.

"Four innings, 60 pitches," Ponson said. "It doesn't matter, I got my work in. It doesn't count down there. I was happy with it. I just keep my arm strength going, my pitch count [up] and go from there."

"It went well," pitching coach Bob McClure added. "He threw 49 strikes and 11 balls."

Ponson joined the Royals for an optional workout at U.S. Cellular Field on Monday.

"I think most of the guys are here. I didn't take roll or anything," Hillman said.

There were a few clumps of snow on the edge of the infield, residue from the tarpaulin as it was removed. The temperature was 36 degrees, but the Royals donned winter hats and heavy jackets and did most of their work under the stands in the batting cages.

Meanwhile, the wind was keeping the waves pounding onto the Lake Michigan shoreline.

The forecast for Tuesday's 1:05 p.m. CT delayed opener is for highs in the lower 40s and sunny skies with winds of 10 to 20 mph, gusting to 30 mph in the morning.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.